April 4, 2018
> Listen to the Parenting Today radio show: Family Routines (mp3, 12 minutes)
What activities does your family do every day? Routines can help our children (and us!) build healthy habits, reduce stress, and reinforce values.
- Routines are important for toddlers. Routines can provide children with a sense of security and safety. When children know what to expect (and what is expected of them), it helps build their confidence and can improve their ability to behave in different situations.
- Routines do not have to fill up every minute of every day. Start with one kind of routine, like getting ready in the morning or having an evening meal together, and see what makes a positive difference for your child.
- What if our routine has to change? It’s okay! Good routines are flexible. When toddlers get sick, when families travel, when parents work, things can change. The point is to set your kids up for greater independence by teaching them what to expect at different times of day.
Remember — routines should NOT create stress, they should reduce it! One of the best things about good routines is that no matter what they include, they help families spend more calm, productive time together, even on the busiest of days!
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